Negotiating advice needed! Phone screen for a job I really want told me the salary range up front, can I negotiate for more if they offer me the job?
I've been looking for a role in IT for a while...I finally got an interview for a very similar kind of job but not in IT. In the initial phone screen the HR person told me the salary range for the position, and the high end is exactly what I was looking for, but she candidly told me that the most she would be able to do would be about 15% less (the middle of the range, I assume based on prior experience this is so I could keep getting raises and not meet the ceiling immediately after getting hired). For the same role in IT, my target salary is exactly in line with the market and the HR person told me that if it was an IT job, that would have been a realistic salary.
I've had my interviews and they went really well, I don't want to assume I'll get an offer but I do want to be prepared if I do. So my question is, if they offer me what the HR person said they would, can I negotiate for a higher salary? Will that look bad since she already told me what the maximum she could give me would be? At my last job at a different company I was underpaid by 25-30% (my own manager told me this, and I also knew the salary of some of my peers), and despite outperforming everyone on my team and asking for a well deserved raise for years I never got it. I liked my job but it left a really bad taste in my mouth and once I found out how underpaid I was, I found it really hard to motivate myself. I want this new job but I don't want to set myself up to be dissatisfied by accepting a lower salary than what I deserve.